News 2015

Summertime Dancing’s Old Time Holiday 9th - 12th January

Friday:  We arrived in Bournemouth at the Wessex Hotel, Bournemouth, for the start of our long weekend of Old Time Dancing with Joyce and Richard.  The weather on arrival was dry but cloudy.  I like the Wessex as unlike many dancing holiday hotels, parking is easy!  A large crowd of  around 70 attended the event from all over the UK.  We were delighted to have the “Custard Tarts”, including the former Chairman of the OTDS  Paul and his wife Hazel, join us in force thus ensuring a lively weekend.  The holiday started with a sherry reception with the sherry being measured out with great accuracy by the hotel.  Dinner was good apart from the lack of crumble or rice pudding.

The evening’s dancing was to CDs and commenced with Let’s Swing.  The programme was the normal mixture of Classical and Traditional Old Time with dances such as the Valse Martine, Chrysanthemum Waltz, Lola Tango, Gainsborough Glide and Shimmering Waltz.  The Leader’s dances were the Trelawney Tango and the Saunter Shiraz.  The Balmoral Blues was led off by the formation team of Shirley and Gordon and Sue & Eddy.  Hilary & Nigel led off the Saunter Reve and Idaho Foxtrot.  The progressive dances were the Cavendish Glide and La Chappeloise led off by the Custard Tarts with Margaret acting as Dance Director.   The set dance was the Quadrilles.  Altogether 19 dances were on the programme.

Jacqui presented Herbie with his own bespoke Sequence Dance colouring book as he had failed to find one when he had visited Summertime’s book club (see photo page).

Saturday:  Very windy overnight and a very wet morning so there was a good turnout for the morning’s dancing.  The Leicester ladies came suitably attired in their best onesies (photo left) inspired by my fashion lead at a previous holiday.  Dances included the Promenade Gavotte,  Summertime Blues and the Sindy Swing.  Richard decided to teach two dances, one old - the Oriental Mazurka, one new - the Selby Swing.  Both appeared to go down well although the Oriental Mazurka with three leaps was beyond those with dodgy knees and hips.  In the afternoon we were left to our own devices; most shopping or resting.

Dinner was an improvement as Crumble was on the menu!!  

The evening’s dancing was to the wonderful music of David Last.  The theme for the evening was Button holes and Corsages with an excellent display being worn including Herbie who literally had a button hole on a stalk (see photo page).  The dancing commenced with the Variety Swing.  The progressive dances were the Flirtation Two Step and the Valse Louise.  The Leader’s dances were the Milbrook Foxtrot and the Classic Gavotte.  The set dance was the Lancers which descended into chaos with one of the sets ending up with 24 people.  Other dances included the Imperial Waltz, Tiger Eye Tango Tango Las Vegas and the Waverley Two Step.  Altogether 19 dances were on the programme including the morning’s teachings.  The elimination dance was won by Pauline and Herbie.  The Winter Waltz  concluded the evening with many donning suitable winter attire for the dance (photo above left).

Sunday:  A free day so a group of us including David Last went with Richard to a local garden centre.  We spent between us a large amount of money at the adjacent Edinburgh Wool Mill where Richard had an intense discussion with the sales assistant on corsets.  Richard spent many hours choosing his seed potatoes.  Following this we visited the Marsham Court Hotel to check all was ready for Summertime’s February holiday.  The hotel has been going through extensive modifications over the past year or so and this shows.  Richard checked the beer in the bar was up to his exacting standards and it passed with flying colours.

After dinner (no more crumble), dancing commenced again to the wonderful music of David Last.  Sunday night was a request night and what a large and mixed programme it was.  The dances chosen were:  Ragtime Swing, Fylde Waltz (led by Hilary & Nigel), Tango Solaire, Serene Saunter, Glengarry Swing (led off by Hilary & Nigel who wore a Glengarry hat), Ava Rose Gavotte, Bluebell Polka (led off by Hazel & Michelle), Mexican Swing, Freda Foxtrot, Firefly Tango, Helena Quickstep, Waltz of the Bells (led off by Rex & Linda), Regis Waltz, Premier Two Step (led off by Hilary & Nigel), Kaymar Sway, Blaydon Races (led off by the Custard Tarts and Associated Crumbles), Melody Foxtrot, Promenade Gavotte, Crinoline Gavotte, Midnight Tango, Saunter D’Amour (led off by Marjorie and Peter), Selby Swing and the Alison Waltz.

A large raffle was held with prizes donated by the attendees and £130 was raised for the Alzheimer's Society.  The holiday quizz was won by Blondelle and Lenore.


After a outstanding weekend of fun and dancing we returned home looking forward to the next holiday in February.  A photo page can be found here.

(NJC 17/1/2015)

Summertime’s New Year Party 2014/2015

Despite several cancellations through illness, seventy turned up for Summertime’s fun filled New Year Celebrations.  The theme for the evening was tartan.  The evening commenced with a wine reception.

Music was provided primarily from Richard’s CDs apart from the music for the fun dances which was provided from my DJ console after training Richard on which button to press.

The programme was a very varied with old and new , popular classical, latin and modern sequence (eg Selby Swing, Fragrance Foxtrot, Rhinestone and Blue Angel Rumbas, Bluebird and Last Waltz, County Gavotte and Midnight Jive etc)  and various fun dances.  The Leader’s dances were the Saunter Together and the Mamma Mia Cha Cha Cha.  The progressive dances were the fun dances the Glengarry Swing and La Chapeloise.  This latter dance was demonstrated by the Cove Formation Team to encourage maximum participation.  The elimination dance was the Sindy Swing and was won by Jacqui and Mike.  The excuse-me was the Tango Serida with the flag bearers being given strict instructions on not to stand in the middle gossiping!

The evening was excellently MC’d by Richard with Joyce and Richard leading off the majority of the dances, with support from Hilary and myself.

Food was a “Bring and Share Supper” and was a super spread fit for the occasion.  An excellent raffle was also held with the proceeds going to the “Alzheimer’s Society”.

Big Ben was played at the stroke of midnight followed by a rousing rendition of Auld Lang Syne.  After the last waltz the evening finished with the National Anthem and “Land of Hope and Glory”.  The evening was conducted in an excellent fun filled atmosphere and was a very lively affair.

Unfortunately there is no photo page of the event as I forgot to take my camera and am therefore in disgrace.  The photo above of the evening was taken with my mobile phone so apologies for the quality.

Summertime’s next dance is Classical and Traditional Old Time and is on the 21st March with David Last.

Nigel - 2/1/2014

Summertime's Christmas Party

OTDS AGM Skipton October 2015

Bryan Smith Tea Dance

Summertime’s Old Time Dance October 2015

OTDS Ball of the Year May 2015

Summertime Dancing’s Old Time Holiday September 2015

Summertime’s Old Time Dance May 2015

Janet & Cliff’s Diamond Wedding Anniversary

OTDS Spring Weekend 2015

GO Sequence Dance August 2015

Summertime’s Old Time Dance March 2015

Doris Mathers

Summertime’s Sequence Holiday February 2015

Summertime’s Garden party August 2015

Anne’s 80th Birthday

Post Ball Tea Dance July 2015

Summertime Dancing’s Old Time Holiday January 2015

Southern Ball 2015

New Year’s Party

Eddy Hamm

News 2014

Summertime Members Janet & Cliff Celebrate their Diamond Anniversary

At this afternoon’s Old Time Club we celebrated Janet & Cliff’s forthcoming Diamond Wedding Anniversary.  Janet & Cliff are members of a group of six who joined the Old Time Club a few months ago coming from  the sequence world.  They enjoyed it so much all of them have joined the Old Time Dance Society.

Joyce presented them with an orchid from the Club to commemorate the happy occasion.  We wish them many more happy years together and of course many more years of dancing.

Summertime’s GO Sequence Dance August 2015

Last night was Summertime’s annual sequence dance marking the approaching end of Summertime’s Summer Sequence Club which runs from mid-May to mid-September.

The programme reflected the ethos of the club of  only containing popular sequence dances rather than one week wonders.  There was a good turnout of around 60 with excellent music provided by David Last who played several tunes he has recorded for his forthcoming CD.

Richard has recently undergone a knee operation and so has been banned from dancing for 6 weeks.  He however MC’d the first half and led off the Crystal Blues and the Rumba Loui-Ann against Doctor’s orders as he still has 4 weeks of the ban to go!  The second half was MC’d by Joyce.

Various combinations of leaders helped with leading off: Joyce & Nigel, Hilary & Nigel, Joyce & Sylvian, Jill & Gwen, Jill & Joyce and Ian & Margaret.  The dance programme started with the Sindy Swing led off by Joyce & Nigel.  Amongst the 20 dances were the Welcome Waltz, Inverary tango, Ava Rose Gavotte, Saunter Shiraz, Mambo Marina, Bluebird Waltz, Gershwin Foxtrot, Midnight Jive, Jasper Quickstep and the Rose Lane Waltz.  The Leaders’ dances were the Balentine Bossa Nova and the Tayside Tango.  The progressive dances were the Mayfair Quickstep and the Sally Ann Cha Cha with “valuable” spot prizes.  Gerald was promoted to chief bottle spinner to determine the prize winners.

The evening was a great success and everyone I spoke to enjoyed themselves.  More photos can be found here.

Doris Mathers  1923 - August 2015

It was with tremendous sadness we learnt of the death of Doris Mathers, devoted wife of Lloyd, who passed away last week after being ill for the past few months.  Doris’s illness has prevented them attending Summertime’s club in the past few weeks.  Doris and her husband Lloyd were long time supporters of Summertime Dancing attending Monday afternoon Old Time Club whenever they could.  Doris celebrated her 90th Birthday at Summertime in 2013.  They also were members of the Vine Dance Club currently run by Summertime Members Hilary & Tony.

Doris has always had a smile on her face and was a quiet person, a perfect foil to her husband Lloyd who has been the life and soul of the party.  They were an inseparable couple, totally devoted to each other.

The funeral will be on Friday 4th September at 14:45 at St Johns Crematorium, Woking.  It has been requested that there are no flowers, no black and any donations to Thames Hospice in Windsor.

We offer our sincere condolences to Lloyd and the rest of the family for their tremendous loss.  Doris will certainly be missed by all her fellow dancers at Summertime.

Summertime’s Garden Party August 2015

On a glorious August Sunday afternoon, the giant wrought iron gates of Purcell Towers slid back for the Annual Summertime Garden Party.  Many Summertime supporters turned up to enjoy the garden which was a colourful mass of flowers and foliage of some kind or another.  I cant remember the names despite Richard’s attempts to convert me apart from two he made me write down.  One dahlia was called Wine Eyed Jill and some sort of daisy was called Black Eyed Susan (see photo page.  What sort of twisted lives did the people who thought up these names lead?   

Copious amounts of tea was on hand, distributed by Hilary and Joyce, to lubricate the vocal chords and keep the gossip going.  A large array of scones and cakes were on hand donated by Richard, Joyce and Hilary 1 & 2.  Richard’s garden is long and mature with lots of seating retreats hidden amongst the foliage; one could easily get lost.

Another great afternoon with fantastic weather.  We wish Richard all the best for his forthcoming key hole knee operation next week and speedy recovery.  His dancing should be even better for the Summertime Holiday at the end of September.    Photos of the Garden party can be found here.  Photos of the operation will be posted later :-)

NJC 10/8/2015

Post Southern Ball Tea Dance at Summertime Dancing - July 2015

On the Sunday following the very successful Southern Ball, Summertime Dancing held a Tea Dance at Normandy to provide further dancing to those who stayed over.  Many of the attendees of the Ball attended with a sell out attendance of around 85.  The attendees came from all over the UK from as far afield as Devon and North of Watford!

Music was provided by Antonair who plays in his popular sing along style.

The afternoon was led by Joyce and Richard and commenced with Let’s Swing.  The Leader’s dances were the Classic Gavotte and the Trelawney Tango.   There were two progressive dances, with “valuable” spot prizes, namely the Progressive Quadrilles and the Rosetta Two Step.  The remaining dances consisted of Traditional and Classical Old Time including the Yearning Saunter, Rialto Two Step, Wedgewood Blue Gavotte, Elizabeth Quickstep, Saunter Shiraz and the Shimmering Waltz.  The last dance was the Veleta.  Altogether there were 20 dances on the programme.  There was also a raffle however Richard had forgotten to put his tickets in and so the raffle had to be halted so his tickets could be added.  He then promptly won a prize.  Obviously the glue he had put on his tickets worked!

At tea time we were presented with magnificent plates of scones and cakes, Joyce having made the scones and Lisa the cakes.  It was a light hearted afternoon rounding off an excellent weekend of Old Time Dancing conducted in a friendly atmosphere.  A photo page can be found here.

NJC 21/7/2015

The Southern Ball July 2015 Winchester

The first Southern Ball took place on Saturday 18th July in the beautiful Guildhall, Winchester.  All tickets had been sold for the event and on the evening around 115 people attended coming from all parts of the UK.  The Ball was the brainchild of Hazel and Paul Harding from Bath Old Time Dancers and was supported by Summertime Dancing.

The MC for the evening was Richard Purcell and the main Leaders were Hazel & Paul, Joyce & Richard and Hilary & Nigel who shared the leading between them with Terry and Dianne joining in the first and last dances for formation dancing.  The photo (left) shows the formation start for the Sindy Swing.  Terry and Dianne looked after the front of house and together with Hazel and Paul undertook all the preparatory work which makes an evening a success.  They together with Hazel and Paul had gone down in the morning to prepare the hall  which looked magnificent in the evening helping make the evening “special”.

The music was provided by the magnificent David Last who was at his best.  Guest of honour was Grahame Baldwin Old Time Dance Society (OTDS) Chairman and his wife Bernice.  Other notable attendees were Sue Hamm (Vice Chairman OTDS), Michelle Boddy (Secretary OTDS) and Harry & Shiela Youlton who organise several Inventive Competitions.

The dances were a mixture of Traditional Old Time and classical dances, to cater for all tastes present, starting with the Sindy Swing and ending with the Alison Waltz, both led off in formation - line across style.

The Leaders’ dances were the Waverley Two Step and the Melody Foxtrot.  The Progressive dances with “valuable” spot prizes were Over the Top and La Chappeloise.  Hilary & Nigel were aided in leading off La Chappeloise by the Oxford and Cove Formation Teams.  The set dance was the Quadrilles.  There were 22 dances in all including the Fylde Waltz, Royal Empress Tango, Kaymar Sway, Serene Saunter, Milbrook Foxtrot, Edwardian Gavotte, County Gavotte (2014) and the Tiffany Saunter.  These latter two dances although relatively new still filled the floor!

There was a very large raffle, unfortunately Richard failed to win a prize (shame).  There was also a lucky ticket prize.

The whole evening was conducted in a fantastic, light hearted, atmosphere generated by the MC, Richard, with his banter and as one of the newcomers to Old Time said to me, they were worried it would be too formal and stuffy but they were delighted to be able to feel relaxed and enjoy the evening.  The ladies all looked amazing.  The Hall acoustics were excellent as was the newly laid floor despite the slight slope on it which made spinning the bottle for spot prizes interesting.  Holbrook shoes were present with a wide range of shoes which encouraged me to make another purchase.  I tend to buy most of my shoes from them now.  Stephanie was also present with a large range of frocks and skirts for the ladies to browse.

Everyone I spoke to thoroughly enjoyed the evening and over 95 have already booked for next year’s Southern Ball in the same location on the 16th July 2016.  A photo page can be found here.  Hazel and Paul are to be congratulated for all their hard work in promoting Old Time with this Ball.  The only issue I had was my GPS took me down two dead ends trying to get out of Winchester!

NJC 20/7/2015

EDDY HAMM  1944 – 17th June 2015

It is a very sad fact that the older we get the more of our dear friends we seem to lose until eventually it’s our turn.

Just a few weeks ago I learned of the passing of Doreen Busby who had been a long term friend and supporter of Summertime Dancing until her health deteriorated. Doreen also supported local old time dancing clubs and the Society. She enjoyed her dancing and lived to a good age. Our thoughts are with Joe and her Family and friends.

Yesterday I learned that tragic news that our close friend Eddy had lost his battle with illness. He originally learned that he had cancer on the day he was due to join us for our last holiday and although in shock he decided to come along anyway. He told me that the support of all his friends on that holiday had helped to lessen the shock and encouraged him to press on with recovery which he tried with all his big heart to do.

Just last year Eddy spent his 70th birthday with Summertime and we had a great afternoon celebrating with him in his usual dry jovial fashion. (See 2014 report).  

Eddy had been a member of the OTDS for 17 years and was a regular supporter of the holiday events. He also supported old time dancing at the clubs, Leicester Glenfield, Leicester St Anne’s, Anstey, Hull and Sheffield at which he will be greatly missed.

70 is no age to pass on and he is going to be terribly missed by so many of his friends and friendly acquaintances in old time dancing.

We offer our love and sincere condolences to Sue and his Family at this very difficult time.

Richard 18th June 2015

Summertime’s Bryan Smith Commemorative Tea Dance June 2015

Sunday afternoon on the 7th June was Summertime’s annual tribute to the recordings of Bryan Smith.    Almost 70 were present for the afternoon travelling from far and wide including Bath, Oxford, Kent and North of the Wash.

All music was played from LP records many of which had been donated to Richard in a still unwrapped condition.  MC’s were Richard & Joyce with Richard struggling to keep an unruly record player in check which reduced the spare time he had to go outside and check on the weather!

There were no “new” dances on the programme, the newest being probably the Sindy Swing which started proceedings with the Regis Waltz  completing the afternoon’s dances.  Amongst the other dances were the Waverley Two Step, Royal Empress Tango, Saunter Reve, La Mascotte, Liberty Two Step, Doris Waltz and the Bermuda Foxtrot.  The leaders’ dances were the Tango Serida and Saunter Together and the set dance was the Quadrilles.  The two progressive dances were the Helena Quickstep, not normally progressive, and the Georgella Blues.  All together there were 20 dances on the programme.  The last dance of the first half was supposed to be the Chrysanthemum Waltz but Richard only had Bryan Smith playing this on a CD, which was never released as a record, and so rather than compromise his principles he changed the dance to the Alison Waltz.

There was a large raffle.  Food was “bring and share” which proved to be a magnificent spread.

It was an excellent sunny afternoon’s dancing to good music.  Summertime’s next dance is the Sunday Tea Dance on the 19th July on the day after the Southern Ball.  A photo page can be found here.

NJC 9/6/2015

OTDS Ball of the Year, Fleetwood, May 2015


After I had had a Rhubarb Crumble breakfast, We gave Richard and Joyce a lift to the event however the journey was a nightmare with major jams on the M6.   The journey should have taken 4 hours but took over 7.  Richard was not a happy passenger.  He had dislocated his knee the day before whilst in bed.  I dont know how he managed that but he was in pain on the journey up.  On arrival at the hotel, the Park House, the advertised three ample car parks on their web site turned out to be two small car parks and a side alley.  Although we had gone up a day early there was only one space left when we arrived.  The hotel however was very pleasant, situated on the front,  and our large room overlooked the sea.  All the staff apart from one stroppy barman were very friendly and efficient and the food was good.  Fortunately bar prices were reasonable as I needed a large drink on arrival to recover from the stress of the journey up with Richard.  The weather was noticeably cooler up north than down south.  After dinner we went into the hotel’s ballroom and danced some social sequence to a very good trio.


After a good night’s sleep and excellent breakfast, we all went to the Winter Gardens when there were dance championships in progress and spent the whole morning shopping at the dozens of dance orientated stalls buying sequined shirts and dance shoes at reasonable prices.  I particularly liked the fact I could buy the shoes there as they had all the sizes in stock rather than having to order them and wait many weeks until they turned up which happened last time I bought shoes at an OTDS event.

After dinner we were transported by coach to the Marine Hall in Fleetwood  which, although looking innocuous on the outside, housed a magnificent ballroom under a large glass dome (photo left).  The floor had recently been resurfaced so was a little sticky in the centre but fine round the outside.  Music for the whole weekend was provided by the excellent David Last who is by far my favourite organist for Old Time and Sequence.

There was a good attendance for this first night which was led by Christine and Robert Haywood who are beautiful dancers to watch and excellent Mcs with a great sense of humour.  The programme was an excellent mixture of Traditional and Classical Old Time dances starting with the Regis Waltz and ending with the Chester Waltz.  Leader’s dances were the Mayfair Quickstep and the Edwardian Gavotte which we hadn’t danced before but learnt especially for this event.  The progressive dance was the Progressive Quadrilles and the set dance was the Quadrilles.  It was a super start to the weekend.


Awoke to a sunny day.  After another large breakfast the four of us went back to the Winter Gardens and made some more purchases before catching the tram to Fleetwood to visit Javid’s who also sell dance regalia.  We couldn’t use our bus passes on the tram much to Richard’s disgust.  I bought another fancy shirt and jacket and Richard also bought a jacket and shoes.  He has been searching every supplier in the UK for dance shoes that fit him and finally he hit success.  Not to be outdone the ladies also joined in buying tops, skirts and dance shoes all at good prices as we negotiated significant discount on all purchases.

The evening was the main Ball hosted by Richard and Joyce who ran a fantastic evening of dancing again featuring old Traditional dances and one or two of the newer Classical dances such as the Winter and Shimmering Waltzes with a full floor dancing them.  There were also many old favourites such as the Empress Mazurka, La Czarine, Valse Martine, Chrysanthemum Waltz and the Latchford Schottische.   

The set dance was the Caledonians with 7 sets taking part.  The progressive dances were the Helena Quickstep and the Alpine Stroll.  A large raffle was held.  June Urquhart was presented with a bouquet of flowers following her retirement from the Secretary post due to eyesight problems.

David Last, under Richard’s direction, played out of his skin.  The evening was conducted in a fantastic atmosphere.

There was a good turnout for the evening.  We retired with sore feet back to the hotel bar to unwind.


Awoke to a dry but overcast day.  A large group of us went to the Tower Ballroom for some 4 hours dancing.  We had never been there before so it was an extra special event.  Paul and Hazel managed to purloin a large section of prime seating for us all which was just as well as the ballroom quickly filled up to capacity.  There was a mixture of dancers present apart from our group featuring competition dances from the Winter Gardens and social dances.  It was noticeable that the ballroom dancers rarely managed to complete more than eight figures before stopping and having a domestic in the middle of the floor causing a traffic pileup.  The floor was a little slippery in places and unfortunately two of our dancers went down, one suffering a bang on the head and the other a fractured wrist.

There were two organists alternating, Phil Kelsall on the Wurlitzer and Chris Hopkins on a Roland electronic organ.  Both played very well but I preferred the smoother style of Chris Hopkins.  The acoustics and sound quality were outstanding.  There was a seamless transition between  the organists with  the Wurlitzer ascending from beneath the floor whilst playing the same tune.  They played some Old Time dances such as the Wedgwood Blue Gavotte, Premier Two Step, Saunter Reve and the Tango Serida.

Following the dancing the four of us went to the top of the Tower and got magnificent views of Blackpool; well worth the ticket price.  The photo left shows the Winter Gardens taken from the top of the Tower.

After dinner we were coached to the Marine Hall for the final evening’s dancing.  Members of the Committee took it in turns to lead off.  Another good programme with plenty for everyone.

The set dance was the Lancers with some 7 sets taking part.  The Leader’s dances were the Festival Glide and the Kaymar Sway.

The dancing started with the Fylde Waltz and ended with the Heather Waltz.

Another great evening of music and dancing.  Tired we returned to the hotel at the end of the evening.


We had to return home.  Apart from taking half an hour to get out of Blackpool, the roads remained clear and it was an uneventful journey home.  We had a fantastic time and were delighted that the weekend was conducted in such a friendly manner after the recent upsets.  Long may the OTDS continue in this spirit.  My only complaint was that there was no Crumble on the menu for the whole weekend.  A photo page can be found here.

NJC 28/5/2015

At Last

Summertime’s Old Time Dance April 2015

After a week of fine weather it decided to start raining as we arrived at Normandy for Summertime’s Old Time Dance.   However this did not dampen spirits and over 80 attended an excellent evening of Old Time Dancing - old and new (providing they are popular and only classical figures are used!).

The music was provided by the excellent David Last who is in my opinion the best Old Time keyboard player and he didn’t disappoint even though suffering from a back injury which caused him great discomfort during the evening.  He had been told by his doctor not to play but rest his back but he didn’t want to let us down.  At the end of the evening several of the men present packed David’s equipment in the car from him to prevent further back damage for which they are to be thanked.

Unfortunately, David wasn’t the only injured person as I had fallen down the stairs that morning cracking at least one of my ribs.  As a result I was unable to dance and had to sit and watch and take the odd photo; very frustrating.  One lady tried to great me with a hug and was taken aback by my screams.

Dancing commenced with the popular Mexican Swing and then followed with the Traditional Old Time competition dance, the Fylde Waltz, which still fills the floor.  The next dance was the Liberty Two Step which Richard explained was normally danced with ladies in white socks and boys in shorts.  This was taken literally by Gordon who promptly rolled his trousers up, not the done thing!  Amongst the other dances were the Firefly Tango, Serene Saunter, Wedgewood Blue Gavotte, Valse Martine, Imperial Waltz, Rialto Two Step, Tango Solair, and Idaho Foxtrot.  Altogether 20 dances were danced finishing with the lovely, popular  Winter Waltz.  The Leaders Dances were the Bambi Blues and Saunter D’Amour.  The set dance was a chaotic Caledonians with Joyce and Richard trying to keep order.  There were two progressive dances with extremely valuable SPOT PRIZES and these were the Progressive Quadrilles and Let’s Swing.  Apart from the Leader’s Dances the dances were led off by Joyce and Richard although Richard pinched my wife to lead off two dances plus the Leaders Dances as I was a shuffling pathetic figure.

It was nice to see Summertime’s new recruits from the Sequence World having a go at all the dances.

There was a very extensive raffle.

The evening was a great success with an excellent happy atmosphere.  With all the unnecessary bitterness caused within the old time community by the formation of a breakaway organisation, this Saturday’s Summetime’s Dance was what Old Time Dancing should be, excellent music and great dances conducted in a FRIENDLY atmosphere.  A photo page can be found here.

The next Old Time Dance is the Bryan Smith Tea Dance on the 7th June to records.  

Nigel 26/4/2015

Old Time Dance Society’s Spring Weekend on the IOW March  2015 Grahame Baldwin OTDS Chairman

We arrived at the hotel around 12:30 and our rooms were ready and there were spaces left on the small exclusive car park.  The hotel was clean and warm and the staff were friendly.  The food was very good but some of the service could have been better. 

The first nights dancing was led by Michelle (photo left) partnered by different friends. She led an excellent evening but it was noticeable that the ENOTDS officials sat together in the bottom corner and boycotted her leading.

On Saturday morning Fred was top notch as he walked us through the "Princess Ena Quadrilles" which was on the programme to be the Saturday night set dance.  Saturday night was led by Mike and Pat who did their usual skilful leading.  I have never seen the ENOTDS officials up and dancing half as much as they did that night.   Mike decided that not enough dancers would get up for the "Princess Ena Quadrilles" so changed it to "The Quadrilles".

Sunday morning was wet and cold so we put on an extra dance session which was attended by about 40 dancers, and was much appreciated.   Sunday night was led by Mike Savory partnered by Kathleen and Jan and was another enjoyable night of Traditional Old Time dancing. Unfortunately near the end Mike decided to thank all the ENOTDS officials who had previously resigned from the Old Time Dance Society Committee.  This is the Chairman’s job and left me with very little to say at the end and I was rather annoyed and told him so.

The ENOTDS bragged about poaching 15 of our members during the weekend but on the whole it was a good weekend and the recent split didn't cause a bad atmosphere.   Certainly on our part we all enjoyed ourselves and danced almost every dance each evening.

Grahame Baldwin  - OTDS Chairman (photos courtesy Paul Harding - more can be found here)

(Footnote from Richard – Members should know that Fred Boast has cut all official ties with the OTDS and has resigned as President and from the committee. It is a great shame that he has been lured away by the Griffiths new venture)

Anne Jessop’s 80th Birthday Party

Joyce, Richard, Hilary & Nigel from Summertime attended  Anne Jessop’s 80th Birthday Party at Waterlooville on Saturday 31st January 2015.

 Despite some snow overnight, it had all vanished by the time we had to travel down.  Many of Anne’s friends including leaders from other clubs were present including Elaine Kirby whose DvDs were a life safer for Hilary and myself when starting out in sequence dancing.

The dancing was to the excellent music of Andrew Varley.  The photo on the left shows Anne, Andrew and husband, Mike.  Anne and Mike led off the first dance which was the Waltz Catherine.  Other leaders present led off many of the other dances.  

The programme featured one or two of the newer dances such as Marwood Mambo and Tiger Eye Tango and many of the old favourites such as Saunter Together, Rumba One, Snowberry Foxtrot, Saunter Chantel and Beyzabanu Cha Cha Cha.  Altogether there were 17 dances on the programme.  

The last waltz was the White City waltz.

In the interval before eating, Anne’s daughter (Michelle) and dance partner performed a lively demonstration dance of a Cha Cha/Salsa fusion (bottom left photo).  There was an excellent large feast laid out afterwards to refuel the dancers.  A collection was held for the Alzheimer Society by Anne’s Sister dressed in fetching gold tights - see photo above right where she is dancing with Richard.

It was a great evening’s entertainment and we wish Anne many more happy years of dancing.

NJC 1/2/2015

Above - Richard and his new dance partner

Summertime’s Old Time Dance March 2015

Summertime’s first Saturday Old Time Dance of the Year was held yesterday (21st).  Over 70 attended from all over the country including the Old Time Dance Society’s Chairman, Grahame Baldwin and his wife Bernice, from Lancashire who we were delighted to have join us.  He gave a short speech stating that despite recent upheavals, the Old Time Dance Society was continuing as normal, and he hoped we would all renew our memberships if we hadn’t already done so (the majority already have).  This view was also emphasised by Richard.  

Music for the evening was produced by David Last who never fails to provide the best Old Time Dance music around (IMHOP - translation for Richard: “in my humble opinion”).  

The programme was the usual mixture of Traditional and Classical Old Time from all ages.  Festivities kicked off with the Sindy Swing then got serious with the Waltz Camay.  Amongst the other dances were the Waverley Two Step, Doris Waltz, Shimmering Waltz, Rene Two Step and the Alison Waltz.  Altogether there were 22 dances.  The progressive dances were a Paul Jones and the Georgella Blues.  Leader’s dances were the Tango Serida and Saunter Reve.  The set dance was the Quadrilles with some 5 sets taking part with Joyce providing instruction and Richard aiding the newer members with gentle pushes adding to the confusion.  It was great to see some of the latest members we have had join Summertime’s Old Time Club, from the sequence world, taking part in the evening including the set dances.  New blood is essential to keep Old Time alive.

Grahame and his wife led off the Classic Gavotte and the audience showed solidarity with his Northern roots by donning cloth caps or knotted hankies (photo right) which brought him to a standstill overcome with his emotions.     Once Grahame had recovered Richard lent him his cap to wear as he recommenced the dance (photo left).  This was all triggered by banter in emails between Grahame and Richard starting with Grahame asking if “two foreigners from up ‘t North could have tickets for the dance” to which Richard replied they would have to leave clogs and caps outside.  Graham responded with “is a knotted hankie alright?”.

This was Grahame’s first visit to Summertime and he was made very welcome.  In return he displayed his considerable singing talents to the tune “This is Our  Lovely Day” during the Saunter Reve.  Popular opinion was they surpassed those of Richard.  

A large raffle was held and Grahame was invited to draw the tickets endearing himself to Richard by not pulling out his ticket.

The evening was conducted in a fun, friendly atmosphere MC’d by Richard and Joyce and was an enjoyable evening of old time dancing.  The next Old Time dance is on the 25th April.

A photo page can be found here.

NJC 22/3/2015

Summertime Dancing’s Sequence Holiday, Bournemouth February 2015 (or Two Crumbles and a Rice Pudding)


Over 60 holiday makers attended Summertime’s Popular Sequence Dancing Holiday at the refurbished Day’s Marsham Court Hotel in Bournemouth.  The holiday was sold out with a waiting list.  Weather on arrival was calm, mild for the time of the year and sunny and the drive down was easy for us with no problems.

As for the first night the ballroom was unavailable a Dinner Dance was held in the dining room which had a fair sized dance floor although a little sticky.  Dinner started with a drinks reception to meet old and new friends before sitting down to an excellent meal.

The evenings dancing was to Richard’s CDs and dancing was led off by Joyce and Richard supported by Hilary & Nigel.  Dancing started with the Mayfair Quickstep as an excuse me.  The programme was a varied mixture of old and new popular sequence featuring the latest waltz - Beryl’s Waltz  to old favourites such as the Bluebird and Emmerdale Waltzes, Glenroy Foxtrot and Sally Ann Cha Cha.  Classical dances were represented with  dances such as Tango Solair, Alpine Stroll and Saunter Together.  I managed to set fire to my programme by dropping it on a candle as I rushed off to take photos but my wife put it out.  Altogether there were 17 dances on the evening’s programme.


Overcast but calm and not particularly cold.  This was a free day so the majority hit the various shops in Bournemouth and the surrounding area.

Dinner was again very good with Crumble being on the dessert menu.  Dancing for the rest of the week was in the Ballroom which had a good floor.  Dancing was to the live music of the fabulous David Last and commenced with the Variety Swing.  The varied programme ranged from dances such as the County Gavotte 2014, Engagement, Catherine and Rose Lane Waltzes, Black Onyx Tango, Selby Swing, and Kelly Quickstep.  Joyce and Richard were again supported in leading off by Hilary & Nigel and Rosemary and Peter led off the Crystal Blues.  The progressive dance was La Chappeloise introduced to Summertime on a previous holiday by the “Custard Tarts”.  There were 17 dances on the evening’s programme.


Another free day for sightseeing and shopping and again the weather was kind.  After dinner the evening’s very varied programme consisted of guest’s requests with some of them helping out in the leading off.  David Last again provided excellent music.  The evening’s theme was Hawaiian and everyone joined in with colourful dress with the odd grass skirt (see photo above).  The dances consisted of Ragtime Swing, Tango Las Vegas, Silver Rumba (Rosemary & Peter), Welcome Waltz (Hilary & Nigel), Jacqueline Cha Cha Cha (progressive), Iris Foxtrot, Mojito Mambo (Hilary & Nigel), Summertime Blues (Shirley & Gordon), White City Waltz (Hilary & Nigel), Quando Quickstep, Pink Diamond Foxtrot (Pauline & Robin), Trelawney Tango (Heather & Larry), Queen of Hearts Rumba (Hilary & Nigel), Rock Crazy Jive (Rosemary & Peter), Ava Rose Gavotte, Freda Foxtrot and Patricia Waltz.


In the morning there was some general dancing and Joyce and Richard taught two dances:  the latest rumba - the Star Ruby Rumba and the Waltz Caravelle (1968).  Richard made great use of a bamboo cane pinched from the hotel gardener to ensure our fencing lines were not pointing at the floor but horizontal.  The afternoon was free for yet more shopping.

The evening started with an excellent dinner with Apple Crumble on the menu so I was happy again.  Music was again provided by David Last.  Dress theme was blue.  The evening again consisted of 17 popular sequence dances such as the Grasmere Waltz, Mahonia Foxtrot, Tayside Tanfo, Watkin’s Waltz, Suzanne Quickstep, Balentine Bossa Nova etc.  Joyce and Richard were supported in leading off by Hilary & Nigel and Jenny & Philip (Snowberry Foxtrot), Sylvian & Richard (Saunter Shiraz), and Pauline & Robin (Rosebud Rumba).  During the Rosebud Rumba Robin guided Pauline by placing his hand on her bottom.  Richard spotted this and tried to keep things “proper” with his well used cane.  The elimination dance was the Tango Serida and the progressive the Mexican Swing.


Another free day for shopping.  We went with Richard to visit a Garden Centre he had spotted on his last visit but as usual we never found it but found two others, one of which was up to his demanding standards and so he was able to buy some plants and seeds.  They all look like weeds to me.

At dinner Rice Pudding was on the menu which is nearly as good as crumble so I was very happy again.  The evening’s dancing was to CDs and the dress theme was Valentine so there was a great deal of red amongst the dancers.  The programme started with the Skye Swing and Waltz Monet and amongst the dances were the Valentines and Wedgwood Blue Gavottes, Hoabie and Elderberry Quicksteps, Bambi Blues, Gershwin Foxtrot and Mambo Marina.  The progressive dance was the Sindy Swing.  Joyce and Richard were assisted in leading off by Hilary & Nigel and Margaret & Ian (Mamma Mia Cha Cha).

The raffle in support of the Alzheimer’s Association raised £100.  The holiday quizzes were won by Peter (Photo Quiz) and Sylvian & Jean (Crossword Quiz).  Even a tie break couldn’t split them.

The evening finished with the Waltz Catherine, Auld Lang Syne, National Anthem and Land of Hope & Glory.


Pouring with rain.  Returned home.  The general consensus was the hotel was excellent with very good food and excellent service.  The holiday had been excellent fun and value but exhausting.  A photo page can be found here.

We are pleased to announce that the second “Southern Ball” of Traditional and Classical Old Time Dancing will take place on the 16th July 2016 at the Guildhall Winchester.  Music will be provided by David Last and the MC will be Richard Purcell.  The Leaders will be Hazel & Paul, Richard & Joyce and Hilary & Nigel.   More details can be found here.

Summertime's Christmas Party 2015

A good crowd attended Summer20151214-IMG_6353.jpgtime's final Club meeting of 2015 which was the annual Christmas Party.  We were delighted to welcome visitors Paul and Hazel from Bath and Herbie and Pauline from Kent.  the afternoon consisted of easy popular dances such as the Waverley Two Step and the Kaybee Saunter, along with party dances including the Blaydon Races.

There were issues in the progressives with ladies forgetting what sex they started the dance as, leading to total confusion especially in the Paul Jones (photo left).

There was a large Bring and Share tea with plenty of food for everyone.  There was also an extensive raffle.

Richard and Joyce handed out gifts to the many background helpers at Summertime such as Shirley, Dorothy, Gordon, Pat , Hilary, Nigel, Jacqui and Michael.

The Club is now closed for Christmas and will reopen on the 18th of January 2016.

Old Time Dance Society’s Autumn Weekend Skipton, October 2015

Thursday:  Three of us from Summertime (Hilary, Joyce  Nigel) drove up to Skipton a day early in case of traffic problems for the OTDS AGM weekend.  As it happened we had a good journey (Richard wasn’t with us otherwise we would have been stuck in jams for hours) with the only holdups being in Bradford.  Joyce went to her first McDonalds on the way up for lunch.  The hotel for the weekend was the Rendezvous Hotel just outside Skipton overlooking the canal.  It was a modern building in excellent conditions and with large rooms.  All the dancing took place in the hotel’s ballroom.  Dinner was excellent although there was no crumble on the menu.

Friday:  Dry day so after a fantastic fried breakfast, walked along the canal into Skipton and wandered around the market and Skipton Castle (photo above).  Joyce tried out an 11th century loo for size.  The castle had been build in 1090 and was in a remarkably good state of repair.  On returning to the hotel we found all the other attendees arriving.  Numbers peaked at around 120 and the event was sold out.

At dinner I was handed a letter stating that I had been elected to the committee.  I had put myself forward for election to the committee in response to a call for nominations in the June Newsletter (248).  The Constitution states that new committee members have to be nominated and seconded by members of the Society and elected by a postal ballot if required.  As there were several vacancies and I was the only new applicant, there was apparently, therefore, no need for a ballot.

After dinner (no crumble) we retired to the ballroom for the evening’s dancing led by Kath & Keith Jackson.  Music for the weekend was by Elizabeth Harrison who I had never heard before but she was an excellent musician.  She had written her own arrangements for the set dances and composed one of the gavotte tunes.  The leading off by Kath & Keith was of excellent standard and started with the Vesta Waltz.  The excellent programme was all Old Time dances with many old favourites and one or two I was not familiar with such as Gay Paree and the Pink Lady Waltz.  The Leaders dances were the Sherrie Saunter and Helena Quickstep.  The set dance was the Quadrilles.  There were two progressive dances, the Imperial Two Step and the Anniversary Two Step.  Altogether there were 20 dances on the programme.

Saturday:  Wet morning but no issue as it was the AGM.  This passed fairly peacefully with no significant issues raised.  There had been some suggestions for minor changes to the Constitution submitted by Dave Stevenson, but these had arrived too late for the last committee meeting so will be reviewed at the next committee meeting.  After the meeting we headed for Boundary Mills, Colne, an outlet shopping centre where the ladies bought new clothes.  

After dinner (no crumble)  dancing commenced.  The evening was led by convention by the Chairman of the OTDS - Grahame Baldwin and his wife Bernice.  Again an evening of excellent leading and a good programme.  The programme started with the Fylde Waltz and finished with the Valse Martine.  The committee dance was the Classic Gavotte and the Leaders’ dance was the Kaybee Saunter.  The set dance was the Lancers.  There was a full floor for almost all the dances.  The progressive Friendly Circle Waltz  started chaotically but was finally brought under control.  It was an another light hearted very enjoyable evening with some 20 dances on the programme.

Sunday:  Another dry day,  We decided to drive into the Dales visiting Grassington (for a cup of tea), Malham Tarn and  finally Bolton Abbey (photo left).  The road across the Dales was like a switchback ride but the scenery was fantastic.  Back to the hotel for a nap then dinner.  Food was again very good but still no crumble.  The final evening’s dancing was run by June and Ron Urquhart continuing the light hearted approach which was the norm for the weekend I am pleased to say.  Another evening of great old time dances, excellent leading and good music from Elizabeth Harrison.  Dancing commenced with Crown & Coronet and finished with the Veleta.  Leaders’ dances were the Lola Tango and the Gainsborough Glide and the set dance was the Caledonians.  Again twenty dances were on the programme.

The whole weekend had a great atmosphere thanks to the hard work of the three sets of  Leaders and the service at the hotel was excellent.  The dance programmes gave a wide variety of old time dances with the newest dance probably being the Edwardian Gavotte (1981).  Parking was not an issue as the hotel had ample parking so if you went out for the day you could find a parking space when you returned.

A photo page will be added in due course however some of my photos can be viewed here and on the OTDS web site.

NJC 29/10/2015

Summertime’s Old Time Dance October 2015

Saturday night was Summertime’s October Old Time Dance.  Despite several cancellations through illness we still had a very good turnout.  Music for the evening was provided by the excellent David Last who is becoming somewhat of a (very welcome) fixture in our area.  Guests came from far and wide including Bath and Oxford.  Richard was pleased to see an old flame of his (in his imagination) from his very early days who had seen the error of her ways having been to Specsavers.

At this dance a year ago, we celebrated Eddy Hamm’s 70th Birthday who unfortunately, all too soon, has passed away since then.  We all sorely miss his company and his sense of fun.  As a tribute, a group photo (see above) was taken in memory of Eddy and our best wishes go to his wife Sue & family.

Dancing commenced with the Ragtime Swing and consisted of the usual mixture of old & new Old Time (Classical) dances ranging from old favourites such as Waltz Louise, Kaybee Saunter and Wedgewood Blue Gavotte to newer dances such as the Tiger Eye Tango, County Gavotte 2014 and the Winter Waltz.  The set dance was the Lancers with four sets taking part with gusto.  The progressive dances were the Eva 3 Step and the Anniversary Two Step.  The two Leaders’ dances were the Melody Foxtrot and the Trelawney Tango.  Altogether there were twenty dances.

There was a very large raffle.  The evening was a great success conducted in an easy going atmosphere.  The next Old Time dance is on Saturday 6th February 2016 with David Last.  A photo page can be found here.

NJC 18/10/2015

Summertime’s Autumn Old Time Holiday Bournemouth September 2015


Around 60 guests arrived in brilliant sunshine to the Wessex Hotel in Bournemouth for the start of Summertime’s Autumn long weekend of Traditional Old Time and Classical Dancing.  We were especially delighted to have with us Grahame Baldwin, Chairman of the Old Time Dance Society (OTDS) and Michael Mann who was a founder member of the Society along with many of our old friends as well as some newcomer’s to Summertime events.  Festivities started with the Sherry Party with ample sherry available some having thirds and fourths.

Dinner was good and very large portions for those having the Spaghetti  Bolognese like me.  Dancing was to CDs and was a request night with many of the requestors leading off.  The Helena Quickstep opened proceedings:  Valse Martine (Michael Mann & Betty), Tango Las Vegas (Marjorie & Peter),  Tiffany Saunter (Shirley & Gordon),  Wedgwood Blue Gavotte (Joy & Wendy), Tango Magenta (Bernice & Graham), Sherrie Saunter (Jean & Dave Houghton), Guitar Tango (Margaret & Clive), Southern Two Step (Hazel & Paul) and the Kaymar Sway ( Hilary & Nigel).

Other dances included the Mexican Swing, Tiger Eye Tango, Let’s Swing, Square Tango, Tango Las Vegas & Tango Solair.  The set dance was the Caledonians which was chaotic in our set as one of the ladies (Pat) kept forgetting she was dancing man.   The progressive dances were Let’s Swing and the Mexican Swing with lavish prizes from the 99p shop.

At the start of the Southern Two Step, Hazel donned a sports bra following numerous occasions when Richard has suggested she needed one.  Her gesture was supported by many others who also donned ill-fitting sports bras outside their clothing (see photos).


Awoke to bright sunshine.  After an ample breakfast we attended the morning’s dance session.  Two dances were recapped, the Eva Three Step and Saunter Surfinia along with tuition on the Old Time Waltz for the benefit of the newcomers to Old Time.  In the general dancing session, dances included the Ragtime Swing, Saunter Reve, Midnight Tango, Georgella Blues, and the Winter Waltz.  Richard was shocked to see the Chairman of the OTDS – Grahame – dancing with “cat” slippers on.

The rest of the day was free for shopping or sunbathing.

Dinner was very good and topped off with an excellent apple and rhubarb crumble.

The theme for the evening was “sparkle” and Richard was resplendent in his diamante decorated white Tuxedo.  Dancing was to the sing along music of Antonair who played some great tunes and the music for the set dance which was the Quadrilles.  Hazel, Paul, Diane and Terry (Bath) presented Richard with a large parcel to commemorate his 9070th birthday next year with the instructions to unwrap a layer of each dance.  Under several layers were joke gifts like a Bruce Forsythe mask.  After many layers the final small box contained a pair of cufflinks  depicting dancers.

The evening’s programme was the usual varied mixture of old and new dances including the morning’s recaps of the Surfinia Saunter and the Eva Three Step.   Grahame and Bernice led off the Oriental Mazurka to save Richard’s knees.  Other dances included the Shimmering Waltz, Valse Louise, Crinoline Gavotte, Royal Empress Tango, Freda Foxtrot and the Yearning Saunter.  Altogether there were 19 dances with the evening finishing with the Cuckoo Waltz.

Half way through the evening Sylvia Gilding and Jean Giddens gave another present to Richard which turned out to be a pair of “cat” slippers complete with a bell.  These dramatically improved his dancing.


Awoke to bright sunshine again.  It was a free day and many headed off to Swanage on the bus via the Sandbanks Ferry.  Richard didn’t want to go on the bus so Hilary and I drove him and Joyce to Swanage, however for much of the journey we were stuck behind the bus the others were all on!  We had a very pleasant day wandering around Swanage in warm sunshine.

The evening’s dancing was to the excellent music of Larry Green and commenced with the Selby Swing.  Joy and Wendy partnered Joyce and Richard in the Tango Serida as it was announced that they would be hosting an evening at next spring’s OTDS Easter weekend in Torquay.   Other dances included the Edwardian Gavotte, Waltz Debonaire, Melody Foxtrot, Eva Three  Step, Surfinia Saunter Empress Mazurka, Waverley Two Step, Classic Gavotte, Crystal Blues, Four Hand Star, Serene Saunter, Regis Waltz, Glyngarry Swing, Bambi Blues, Honky Tonk Swing and the Midnight Tango.

The hotel had a coach party from Holland staying for the weekend and kept peering through the door at our antics.  Five of them took up the offer to come and sit with us and watch the dancing which they found fascinating.

A large raffle was held for the Alzheimer's Society which raised £101.

The holiday quiz winners were Blondelle and Margaret and Clive.

Several of us chatted about Old Time dances afterwards and their script issues with Grahame and Bernice demonstrating the Maxina in the bar at around 2 am.


Returned home in brilliant sunshine after a fantastic weekend of old time dancing conducted in a light hearted, very friendly atmosphere.  Hotel food and service was excellent as was the size of its car park.  The Old Time Dance Society recruited five new members over the weekend.

A photo page can be found here.

NJC 1/10/15

Double Celebration at Summertime Dancing September 2015

Cakes and sherry were the order of the day as celebrations were held for two of our dancer’s milestone birthdays.

The first was Jean Matravers 80th Birthday who was presented wth a plant by Summertime Dancing.  Jean provided the sherry to celebrate the event.

The second was Alfreda Puttock’s 90th birthday.  Alfreda provided a lovely cake to go with  tea.  Alfreda was presented with a plant by Summertime Dancing.

As there was a zero in both birthdays they both qualified for a rendition of Happy Birthday.

Joyce and Richard and all at Summertime wish them both all the best for the future and many more years of Old Time dancing.